Lauren Howes is the new managing director of the DOC Institute. The Toronto-based initiative of the Documentary Organization of Canada (DOC) announced Howes’ appointment today via a release. Howes’ duties will include managing the DOC Institute’s programming, staff, and finances. The DOC Institute leads the professional development activities of DOC and is the organization’s largest and founding chapter. The chapter also hosts the annual DOC Institute Honours.
Prior to Howes’ appointment at the DOC Institute, they were the executive director of Toronto’s Inside Out 2SLGBTQ+ Film Festival from 2021-2022. Howes’ run with InsideOut included the festival’s second online edition as the event adapted to COVID safety protocols. From 2007 to 2021, Howes served as executive director of the Canadian Filmmakers Distribution Centre (CFMDC), Canada’s long-running independent artist-driven media arts distributor.
“I have always had a passion for supporting the career trajectory of filmmakers and I’m so looking forward to working with the board and staff to build upon the industry development offerings of this venerable organization,” Howes said in a statement from the DOC Institute. “There’s a growing membership of documentarians across Ontario and it’s a real honour to work amongst this vibrant community of creative talent.”
“We’re really pleased to have Lauren joining the team at the DOC Institute as managing director,” added James Weyman, co-chair of the DOC Institute. “They bring years of administrative and management experience in the not-for profit arts sector to the position. We’re looking forward to Lauren contributing to the next chapter of the DOC Institute as we continue to develop and deliver cutting edge training and knowledge-sharing programs for the diverse Ontario documentary community.”
Programs in the DOC Institute include the popular Breakthrough Program, which offers an intensive course on the business side of documentary leading up to Hot Docs, and the Meet the Funder series, which lets filmmakers network with industry leaders to learn what makes for a successful pitch and which avenues may be best to pursue for financing. In 2022, the DOC Institute published an extensive analysis of the funding landscape in Canada for BIPOC creatives.